BUILDING work called to a sudden halt at the Castle Hill Hotel should be allowed to carry on, says a former owner of the pub.
Controversy has reigned over the development ever since the old pub building was pulled down and the large steel skeleton of its replacement erected by the Thandi Partnership.
But Kevin Sloan, who ran the pub and hotel between 1986 and 1998 before selling it to the current owners, is impressed by their ambitious plans and says the existing scheme should get the go-ahead.
A dramatic stop was called to the rebuild when Kirklees Council planners discovered it was being built too high and too large.
A retrospective application has been submitted to fit the current development.
A public meeting is being held tomorrow in Huddersfield Town Hall at 8pm to throw light on the planning issues surrounding the hotel.
Mr Sloan, 53, now lives in Spain but still takes an interest in the hotel, which he owned with his wife Jane.
He said calls to pull down the structure as it stood and start again were `idiotic'.
"I'm sure there's bound to be compromise," he said.
Major structural work had been needed for years at the hotel which was built in 1852, he claimed.
Throughout the time he owned the building, Mr Sloan watched water soak through the walls in wet weather.
"I was fully aware that if any major structural work was to be done to the building it would not stand it and the only sensible and realistic thing to do would be to knock it down."
He added it was a vain hope the old stonework and slate would be used in any new building.
"A new life for the hotel meant a new building," he said.
The Thandi Partnership has appealed against Kirklees Council's enforcement notice and a public inquiry is expected to be held in the next few months.